Visual Anthropology

This category contains 12 posts

Midway Conversations 2016: Neighborhood Documentary Projects Premiere

Last night at the Turf Club the Spring 2016 Visual Anthropology Class screened a selection of the work they have been doing with their neighborhood partners this semester. As with previous years the work they shared illustrated the special relationship that many of them have developed with neighbors in the Hamline Midway. The neighbors shared … Continue reading

Midway Conversations 2015: Neighborhood Documentary Projects Premiere

 “We aren’t training to be filmmakers, but use our cameras to learn. Our neighbors have taught us so much.” This past Sunday afternoon our Visual Anthropology class hosted its fourth annual public screening and “thank you” party for our neighborhood—The Hamline Midway. While in previous years we had an early evening slot, this year the … Continue reading

Mobile Visual Ethnography Kit

Last year I posted a bit about the simple, mobile equipment that I have put together for the students in my visual anthropology class to use on their visual documentary projects. This year I have made a few updates that are worth a quick share. I’m still committed to using Zoom H1s for audio capture—there … Continue reading

Midway Conversations 2014: Neighborhood Documentary Projects Premiere

On May 20th from 5:30-7:30pm at a local neighborhood venue, the Turf Club, this spring’s Visual Anthropology class premiered their final mini-documentary projects to a packed house of 100-120 people. This was the second such public event (the first was written about here) and the first to actually be pulled off during finals week at the … Continue reading

HU Visual Anthropology Class in the Local Newspaper

I was really excited an proud to see that this semester’s Visual Anthropology class got a writeup in this past Monday’s local newspaper. Mila Koumpilova, an education reporter at the Pioneer Press, visited our class the week before, sat through some student projects, interviewed students and then went to observe a filming session with a student and neighbor. … Continue reading

(Simple) Mobile Visual Ethnography Equipment

I’m often telling folks that the goal of my visual anthropology class is not to make filmmakers, but to use basic equipment to have my students make films together with others… For the past few years, students in my class have been working with local volunteers from our university neighborhood—The Hamline Midway—to make simple films … Continue reading

What Weibo Wipes: A Collection of Censored Images

Sometime this last week a colleague shared a link to a very interesting collection of images erased from the Weibo microblogging website (“China’s Twitter”). The collection is being made by ProPublica and also includes some very interesting related articles about online censorship in China, such as “How to Get Censored on China’s Twitter.” I saved the link … Continue reading

Some Mao Era Ethnographic Films

Clearly massive hard drives are becoming like attics—places where forgotten things wait to be rediscovered. Yesterday while talking with a friend about the Oroqen people in China, I vaguely remembered that six or seven years ago a visual anthropologist in China had shared with me an old Communist-era ethnological film about them. I had saved … Continue reading

The Mona Lisa: Art in the Age of Digital Consumption

The Mona Lisa is undoubtedly one of the most recognizable images in the world. Perhaps second only to the Eiffel Tower, it is an icon of the tourist experience of Paris. So, when we arrived at the Louvre with thousands of other tourists, of course, the first thing we did was go to see it. I … Continue reading

University at Snelling 20×20: A Petcha Kutcha Study

How can students in a senior seminar present ideas to the class in a low-stakes way that might enjoyable and, above all, fast enough that we can get through all of them with time for brief discussion at the end of class? After discussing photography for two weeks, I wanted everyone in class to actually … Continue reading


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